JMSC teaching assistant wins Hong Kong arm wrestling competition and VIP package to meet Arnie

She is known at the JMSC as a teaching assistant for the Media Law and Ethics course. But in her spare time, Sharron Fast is a boxer and a weightlifter―and more recently a champion arm wrestler.

Fast’s newest out-of-class hobby earned her a VIP spot at the inaugural Arnold Classic Asia Multi-Sport Festival, held recently here in Hong Kong, and the chance to meet the event sponsor, movie strongman and former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.

She got the invitation by beating out ten opponents in a series of weekly arm wrestling showdowns held at Frites bar and restaurant in Hong Kong’s Central district. The final was held on 13 August.

Fast said her confidence from boxing and weightlifting carried over when she stepped up to the table and beat her first opponent.

‘I had never arm-wrestled in my life before I entered the competition, but as I sat in the audience during one of the first qualifying matches I had a nagging voice telling me that I should enter the next round,’ she said.

‘I’m a firm believer in what I like to call “incidental knowledge”—knowledge or strength that you might be surprised to discover that you possess in one area of life as a result of study or preparation in a completely different arena.’

The winner’s VIP package included attending Schwarzenegger’s personal motivational seminar and having a photo taken with the film star.

‘It was incredibly humbling to spend the weekend with individuals whose enthusiasm for sport sees them managing families alongside their professional and fitness careers,’ Fast said.

‘The winners of the fitness and bodybuilding competitions all spoke of the enormous satisfaction of “quiet achievement”. These are individuals who have woken daily before dawn for decades to train before their “real” day began, who have spent years perfecting their nutrition and training, and who do this all with little fanfare. For them, the victory is not in the minutes (on stage) but in the years (in the making).’

IMG-20160812-WA0000‘Dogs weren’t allowed inside the event, but I still managed to get a snap of mine off-site in a “pose-off” with Arnold. Hard to say who is posing better!’ she added.

The Arnold Classic Multi-Sport festival is now held on six continents and offers amateur and professional fitness lovers the chance to test their merits against local and international competitors in a range of sports from martial arts to bodybuilding and chess. Read more about the festival here.

Sharron Fast is currently Teaching Assistant on Doreen Weisenhaus’ ‘Media Law and Ethics’ course, and will also be a TA on Kevin Sites’ course ‘Killing Stories: The Search for Truth in the Narratives of War’ in January. Learn more about undergraduate courses at the JMSC here, and postgraduate courses here.